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House Blocks Biden’s Federal Land Migrant Camp Plans

Holland McKinnie
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Six Democrats joined all House Republicans this week to take steps to block the Biden administration’s proposal to use federal lands as improvised illegal migrant camps. The “Protecting our Communities from Failure to Secure the Border Act,” introduced by Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY), draws an ideological stance opposing unchecked open border illegal immigration.

The measure passed by a 224-203 vote. It was proposed in light of recently announced plans by New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) and New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D) to utilize Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field for housing illegal migrants for an indefinite period. The New York response to the recent flood of illegals raises critical questions about the White House’s failure to enforce the nation’s immigration laws.

In New York City, the cost to house illegal immigrants this year alone is expected to hit upwards of $12 billion. The unprecedented and unpredicted expense is forcing the city to cut spending on other essential budget items.


Malliotakis pointed out the unfairness to all Americans that would result from “turning our federal parks into encampments for unvetted migrants.” Frustration with the illegal migration crisis is now extending beyond virtually every Republican to include a growing number of Democrats who are breaking ranks with the administration.

The bill faces certain difficulty in the Democrat-controlled Senate. Nevertheless, its passage in the House conveys the message that more Democrats are increasingly concerned about the open borders crisis. Malliotakis has urged Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) to pass the legislation. However, it remains uncertain whether any Senate Democrats will support the measure.  

The White House has predictably opposed the bill, arguing that it is an improper constraint on the powers of the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture. The administration further claims the bill “would significantly restrict the ability of these departments to make decisions regarding the appropriate uses of their lands and resources.”


The passage of the “Protecting our Communities from Failure to Secure the Border Act” in the House could present an opportunity for some Senate Democrats to take a stand for their constituents against the growing migration crisis. The bipartisan support it has drawn in the House reflects an ever-increasing unease, even among Democrats, about the direction of federal immigration law enforcement and its impact on American citizens and national security.